Elderberries, Antioxidants, and Free Radicals
Have you been hearing your friends talk about Elderberry Syrup? Elderberry Syrup has been all the rage lately and there’s many reasons why!
Many of my like-minded, natural living friends have been sharing their love for Elderberry Syrup on social media for a few years now. When winter finally hit, I knew it was time to make my first batch. It was much easier than I thought!
Before I got started whipping up my first homemade batch of Elderberry Syrup, I did some research to find out the scoop on Elderberries.
Proposed benefits of Elderberries according to this study include:
What are Antioxidants?
Antioxidants are known to do a lot of good things for our body, such as support our immune system. They are essential to our body working properly and maintaining homeostasis.
One of the most important things that antioxidants are known for is the ability to provide protection from damage caused by free radicals. Antioxidants prevent the oxidation of these free radicals which ultimately is what results in cellular damage.
Free radicals are unpaired oxygen intermediates, so they are molecules that may cause damage in our body because they are stealing electrons through oxidation.
Free radicals are naturally produced in our body during several metabolic processes but also can be caused by exposure to external sources such as the cigarette smoke, environmental pollutants, radiation, pesticides, certain drugs, industrial solvents, ozone, and even high sugar diets. When it comes to neutralizing these molecules, antioxidants play an important role.
Yes, our body does also produce free radicals internally via in the mitochondria, during inflammation and phagocytosis, via the arachidonate pathways, during ischemia or reperfusion injury, and even during exercise (this is NOT a reason to avoid exercise).
During exercise, our body does undergo a form of oxidative stress. The benefits of exercise are entirely worth this mild drawback in our opinion! Ask your physician about this if you are uncertain!
For those wanting to hedge against any small amount of free radical production during exercise, consider the importance of supplementing with antioxidants for those that are physically active.
Despite the endogenous sources of free radical and reactive oxygen species (ROS) production, it is imperative to return our attention to the external (or exogenous) sources. Please consider that traditional commercial household cleaning products, personal care products, pollutions, pesticides, and a high sugar diet chock-full of artificial flavorings, refined oils and refined carbs all substantially increase our burden of oxidative stress in the body.
As I approached my mid-20's I slowly learned about how much responsibility I had to gradually teach myself about how to live healthfully. You see, most products out there that are convenient and thereby potentially very toxic. Fast food restaurants specialize in high carbohydrates and loads of refined vegetable oils which are nearly certain to lead to inflammatory events and potentially heart disease. Store-bought hand soaps and household cleaners are known to be a potent source of fragrance which is increasingly known for numerous potential adverse health risks.
The knowledge about chemicals hiding in our home for 25 years drove my passion for pursuing wellness in a different light and encouraged me to change my lifestyle with longevity in mind. It also became my mission to help educate friends and family members about methods to holistic health and wellness.
I believe in incorporating other healthy lifestyle habits such as exercising, getting quality sleep, balancing stress, and supporting my body with the characteristics of essential oils.
We also can allow our body to be equipped with antioxidants to serve as an efficient defense system to prevent damage done by free radicals.
Aside from my natural sources of vitamins and antioxidants-primarily via fruits and veggies- I find it important to supplement with Elderberry to supplement my efforts.
Elderberries are a rich source of vitamin A, B, and C. I have found it easier (and quite delicious) to make a rich elderberry syrup.
Homemade Elderberry Syrup
It can be used in a variety of ways. Personally, I like to add it to my morning Ningxia shot. It has also found its' way into my yogurt or oatmeal. I even find that I like to take it as a shot on its' own with some Vitality essential oils mixed in.
Here are the Vitality Oils I add to my Elderberry Syrup:
Here are the other ingredients that I used for my Elderberry Syrup:
And without further ado, here are the instructions for making the Elderberry Syrup:
Related Essentially Well Posts:
Please feel free to comment and let us know how you enjoy Elderberry Syrup in your home to help our community!
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